Next time someone asks you about your beard, mustache, sideburns, chin strap, soul patch or scruff, you’ll have a story to tell that might surprise them — and you. Turns out there’s more to having facial hair than just liking how you look or wanting to be part of a popular style trend for men.
Facial hair could be good for a man’s health
The BBC recently lead an investigation that could show your beard contains microbes that kill bacteria, something like antibiotics. The report also referenced a 2014 study that showed men without beards were more likely to be carrying antibiotic-resistant infection than men with beards. Researchers hypothesized that the tiny abrasions caused by shaving might support bacteria. The BBC theorized that something within the facial hair might actively fight infection. And to test their theory, they swabbed a random assortment of beards and had them tested. Certain microbes from the beards behaved like antibiotics and killed bacteria.
Beards probably won’t be used to create antibiotics quite yet
What’s “growing” in your beard is affected by everything from what you touch (your nose, mouth, computer, phone) to what you eat. In fact, the E. coli-fighting microbes discovered in the BBC study could have come from something the trial participants had for lunch.
In addition, this discovery is in direct opposition to a report declaring facial hair to be dirtier that a toilet bowl. Microbiologist John Golobic swabbed a series of beards and found the same kind of bacteria that is also found in human waste. But don’t pull out your razor just yet.
Maintain your beard, maintain good hygiene
There’s really no downside to having a beard or other facial hair, as long as you wash your face fairly frequently. Beards can:
• Provide protection from the sun’s harmful UV rays
• Reduce rashes and breakouts that shaving can cause
• Hold in your face’s natural moisturizers
• Trap allergens and keep them from entering your airways
A beard may not be the key to maintaining your health, but visiting your doctor when you have concerns can be. Call us for an appointment today: 972-403-5425.
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